Honduras and Spain strengthen collaboration to make world football grow

Tripartite cooperation between FENAFUTH, RFEF and FIFA bears fruitDelegates from the Honduran Federation traveled to Barcelona for a technical exch

  • Tripartite cooperation between FENAFUTH, RFEF and FIFA bears fruit

  • Delegates from the Honduran Federation traveled to Barcelona for a technical exchange

  • Member associations strengthen their bilateral relations, in line with FIFA’s Vision 2020-2023

FIFA’s Vision 2020-2023 seeks to promote the development of world football through cooperation, and that attitude was visible last month in Barcelona, ​​where a delegation from the National Autonomous Football Federation of Honduras (FENAFUTH) maintained a technical exchange with their counterparts from the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF).

The event took place within the cooperation agreement between FENAFUTH and RFEF, promoted and coordinated by the Subdivision of Member Federations for the Americas of FIFA.

The trip that a delegation of eight Hondurans undertook continued this fruitful collaboration.

“I think that these types of exchanges, and this one in particular, have enormous value for federations. [de fútbol]. To begin with, because of the amount of things they learn from the federation that organizes the exchange, but also because of the lessons that the federation that receives this exchange will also teach when they return to their country ”, said Sara Panizo, director of the Subdivision of Member Federations for the FIFA Americas.

“We really believe that they are useful to reduce these supposed barriers, these differences that we have, especially in terms of knowledge and how different countries understand football,” added Panizo, who also attended and was a participant in the visit.

The cooperation agreement signed in 2019 established a technical exchange project, supported by the FIFA Forward Program, as a catalyst to grow soccer education in Honduras and ensure the support of the RFEF.

Attention has focused on reviewing the coaching licensing process in Honduras and improving the training and level of coaches in the country; and the alliance has been gaining strength.

As a first initiative, in October 2019, a Spanish instructor visited the Central American country to review and improve the study plans of the FENAFUTH course for the category of trainer with License A, and to give a seminar for current and future Honduran instructors.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the exchange could continue by teaching more courses over the Internet.

However, the exchange gained real momentum with the in-person visit to Barcelona.

During the visit, the participants supervised the trainings at RCD Espanyol, attended ‘coaching’ seminars and joined the annual ‘Dia de l’Trainer’ congress. It was a unique opportunity for visitors to see some of the most experienced RFEF experts in action first-hand.

“Without a doubt, it has been an unbeatable experience for us here, from Honduras; to be able to finish it by watching elite-level soccer training, “said Luis Alvarado, current Honduras U-20 men’s coach.

“It has been very educational and useful for us, and I know that we are going to make the most of it and take it back to Honduras,” he added.

That is the key for the Honduran delegation: take what they have learned in Barcelona and adapt it to their particular style of play.

“We are also aware of our own shortcomings with respect to the environment where our children and youth play, and even our professional players,” admitted experienced Honduran coach Mauro Reyes.

“That makes us compare [las deficiencias], analyze the differences and find out where we are failing and what things we can improve ”, he added.

The Honduran men’s team has qualified for 5 of the last 6 Olympic Games, finishing fourth at Rio 2016, and has also entered the FIFA World Cup three times. However, La H has never made it past the group stage at a men’s World Cup, and that’s the next step they hope to take.

“What I have seen the most here and what I liked the most is that the planning is respected; and that is important. The difference is that, sometimes in our countries, we plan something but we end up doing something very different or we leave things half finished, ”said Yoni Rivera, member of the Executive Committee of FENAFUTH.

“If we change this, for sure we will be able to achieve great things in the world of football. We have already shown it at the Olympics. We have done well in them and, as I say, if we change how we develop our local and national leagues, I am sure that we will see the results in no time, “he added.

The solid and active working relationship between Honduras and Spain will continue with the implementation of the second phase of the cooperation agreement. This plan will focus on creating and developing a Professional Coach License in Honduras that will further drive the growth of elite soccer in a country that has great potential for international success.

“We are very satisfied with the exchange between RFEF and FENAFUTH,” declared José Ernesto Mejía, secretary general of the Honduran federation.

“We had the opportunity to send eight instructors to Barcelona to participate in the ‘Trainer of Trainers’ course for 10 days with a work plan created by the School of Trainers of Catalonia; with a hybrid work base between the classrooms and the field. We thank FIFA, for the constant support through the FIFA Forward to carry out this exchange, and the RFEF for all the collaboration and good disposition with our coaches ”.

Pep Sansó, director of the National School of Trainers of the RFEF, agreed that the continuous exchange was being a success.

“Having been able to share knowledge and experiences with FENAFUTH has helped us to see a different reality, with other ideas and ways of acting that will help us improve,” said Sansó.

“The collaboration with the Federation of Honduras has been full. We hope it has been beneficial for them and we hope to be able to maintain it in the future, since from the RFEF we are always predisposed to exchange knowledge, opinions and experiences with other international federations ”.

Currently, various cooperation agreements between member associations are being implemented around the world, with FIFA as the main coordinator, to improve training, knowledge, structure and strategic planning in key areas of football such as coaching, refereeing and women’s soccer, thus making soccer truly global.